Monday, September 28, 2015

Weekend updates

I'm a bit behind on blogging lately. It's definitely been harder to find the time since Nolan was born but I'm determined to keep my blog updated. I love having these pictures and stories to look back on. Here are some of my favorite pictures from the past few days. 
I love playing with this sweet boy everyday.
Enjoying his new hedgehog!
Thanks Grammy for the new toys and clothes! I love how everyone including Sydney is looking in this picture.
Using his teether mid diaper change.
These two love to play together.
We watched one of my friend's dogs over the weekend. Nolan enjoyed petting her.
Hanging out in his pack and play.
He's finally starting to loose his long dark hair in the back and new hair is coming in.
In his high chair like a big boy! He's still spitting up a decent amount so sometimes not wearing a shirt is easier! We've thought about adding in some solids but I want to stick with our original plan of exclusively breastfeeding until six months. I am excited to start solids but at the same time we are in a good routine, and I love that nursing has no prep or clean up. 
Nolan had his first visit to the PSU bar in Atlanta.
Watching the game with other PSU alums! Nolan was wearing his blue and white! 

We have another relatively busy week ahead. Time seems to be flying lately. I got my colonoscopy biopsy results back today and thankfully it wasn't pre cancerous. My surgery to correct my other issue (a fissure...feel free to google it if you're curious. The details are probably too tmi so I'll leave them out) is scheduled for Tuesday 10/6 so I'm trying to get a lot in this week before that. Recovery time should be about 3 weeks with the first 3-5 days being the toughest. Hopefully I'll bounce back quickly and will be good to go by the time Nolan starts crawling. More soon!

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Shopping post baby

With fall here and cooler weather right around the corner, it was time to pull out my jeans and warmer clothes. I haven't worn my fall/winter clothes in two years since last fall I was transitioning into maternity clothes. The thought of wearing jeans that button this year was weird!

I've been fortunate that I'm close to my pre pregnancy weight, however most of my old pants are still tight. They button but they aren't very comfortable. Most of my shirts don't fit well either since I've changed sizes due to breastfeeding. So many of my shirts are too short or tight in the chest area. Many of my clothes also aren't ideal for breastfeeding. Until I had a baby, I didn't realize how the way I shopped and viewed clothes would change. 

When I go shopping now, I have a different set of criteria that I look for. First, will I be able to breastfeed well in the shirt or dress? Some shirts and dresses have complicated straps that would make nursing almost impossible.

Next, is this comfortable? Of course, I still want to look cute but comfort is definitely key as a Mom. I never really wore heels that much but I find myself going for more practical shoes that I can do a lot of walking in. Things like yoga pants, work out capris, and shorts have become a staple since becoming a stay at home mom. While many days are spent in casual clothes, I still try to make sure I have a few days a week where I get dressed nice, do my hair, and feel more put together. 

Washable is key as well. Babies can create messes which often end up on Mom or Dad. It's important the clothes are easy to wash. Those dry clean only type outfits I've been reserving for date nights and special events. 

When looking through my closet lately, I tend to choose the same few favorite outfits. It's a goal of mine as cooler weather approaches to sort through my closet and organize in a way that makes it easier to put together cute outfits quickly and easily. I probably should do another round of donations too. A friend is actually having a clothing exchange party in November so I'd like to bring some things I no longer wear to that and maybe get some new to me items as well. 

It's also time to put the sandals away and pull out flats and boots. I always miss summer but it will be back before I know it!  

Saturday, September 26, 2015

One year ago

On this day last year, we shared with the Facebook community that we were pregnant. I was only 7 weeks pregnant at the time, and I knew it was earlier than most people announce. I love to look back at these one year later memories. Waking up and being reminded how lucky I am is great. It's also crazy to me that this time last year he was the size of raspberry and now he's an almost 20lbs! Things sure can change a lot in one year. 

Friday, September 25, 2015

Identify theft issues

This week ended up being busier than expected. I had kept the beginning of the week quiet in case I wasn't feel great after the colonoscopy. I felt fine by Monday night and was back to normal by Tuesday morning. Nolan's been giving me some great stretches of sleep since those first two teeth broke through. It's amazing how a nice stretch of sleep makes me feel so freshed.

I've been meaning to share this story all week but have been busy dealing with the situation. On Monday night, I got the mail and found a letter from Wells Fargo in Spanish. I had been in a branch last week to close my checking and savings account because I no longer was using those accounts. I almost ignored the letter as a mistake but instead decided to send a picture of the letter to a friend who speaks Spanish. She made me aware that the letter was not an account closure letter and instead it was a letter thanking me for applying for my new Wells Fargo credit card. This was when I initially thought my information had been compromised from one of the big data breaches from Target or Blue Cross Blue Shield. I immediately called and canceled the card and reported it as fraud so that it wouldn't impact my credit closing this account.

Later that night, I received an email my new credit card was on its way. This was concerning to me because I knew I hadn't applied for one. This was when I realized the link to me being in a Wells Fargo last week. The date on the letter was the same date I closed my accounts. Red flags started flying. 

Tuesday morning, I called the bank and asked to speak with a manager and explained the situation. The manager spoke with the employee who assisted me, and she stated she remembered my baby and me and that I had come in to open a credit card. This was news to me! I explained even if I was distracted by Nolan and there was some miscommunication where she thought I agreed to opening a credit card, there still would have been an application process. This is where the manager became concerned. She said she would look into the situation. In the mean time, I set up fraud alerts and looked at ways to protect myself, my social, and my credit. 

Long story short, it was apparently very easy for this bank employee to open up a credit card in my name using the info she had in the computer from my checking and savings accounts. It's very concerning to me that the online credit card application is that easy to get through that someone who wasn't me could do it. I feel very violated, and I also feel nervous working with bank employees in the future. It's a scary world out there and you really don't know who you can trust.

After much thought, I decided to file a police report to cover myself and my identity. My social security number and my future credit is something I take very seriously, and I felt it was important to have this situation documented in case any more identity theft type situations arise. 
Nolan was very well behaved while I met with the investigator and filed the report. Moving forward, I'm not sure what will happen but I do hope they investigate it. Regardless what happens, at least I know I did everything I can. Wells Fargo is also sending me a check so I can buy a credit monitoring service for a few months. I appreciated that gesture and that was their idea. The manager I worked with has been wonderful and very helpful. The phone employees not as much. It's definitely been a learning experience. If anything comes out of this, it's that my information will hopefully be more protected in the future. This is the type of thing you hope never happens to you but unfortunately it's all too common these days especially with the Internet. I hope this post encourages other to check their credit scores and monitor their information. 

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

5 months!

So many smiles from this 5 month old!
He loves his feet!
Those hands love to grab everything!
Starting to sit up more 
Silly boy!
That tongue!
Pulling off the sticker is funny to him!
I love this picture too! 

5 month updates
Weight/height: 19lbs 5 oz/26 inches 

Hair: It is brown. The old hair seems to be falling out and new slightly lighter brown hair is growing in. Some of the original long hair in the back is still there!

Eyes: They are bright blue. He's much more alert now when he is awake and likes to follow objects. He loves to look at himself in the mirror and smile. He also seems to be able to see longer distances and will smile at you across the room if you smile at him.

Clothes: mostly 9 month. 6 month is starting to get small and 12 month is mostly too big.

Diapers: size 3 during the day and size 4 at night. Same as his 4 month update 

Sleeping: He does sleep longer stretches usually and but we still have some nights with frequent wake ups. I think its mostly due to teething, hunger, or a dirty diaper. He pretty consistently goes to bed between 7:30 and 8.

Likes: nursing, car rides, walks in the stroller, his bouncy seat and rock and play, the sound machine, pacifiers, the rocking chair, his activity mat, the jumperoo, being in the carrier, being talked to and read to. 

Dislikes: burping during feedings, spitting up in his crib or car seat, getting his face and hair washed, being overly tired, the nose frida

Eating: He is breastfed every three to four hours during the day, and he still usually nurses once at night. I'm pretty much exclusively breastfeedhng him except if I am out with him and not able too.

Milestones/activities: his head control has gotten really good, he makes lots of noises including consonant sounds, he sneezes, and he hiccups. He coos and smiles often. Just recently he has started squealing and blowing air with his mouth. He still doesn't consistently roll over but can do it with a little help. He loves playing with his feet and reaching for/kicking toys on his activity mat. He also likes to bat at toys on his jumper and knows how to jump in it now. Everything seems to go in his mouth lately. He still spits up often and drools a lot. His first two teeth came through over the weekend! We noticed them yesterday on 9/21/15 and you can feel them. 
I will miss that toothless grin but we are excited his teeth are coming in. It explains why he's been a bit upset lately too! He's growing up faster than I ever imagined, and we are enjoying watching him change and learn everyday!

Monday, September 21, 2015

Colonoscopy follow up

This morning I had a colonoscopy. I had been dreading this since the day I scheduled it about two weeks ago. I was actually proud of myself for doing it because I had been putting it off for a little while now. This isn't something anyone wants to do but sometimes it's necessary. The thought of fasting for a day and a half while breastfeeding really stressed me out. How would I make milk? Was it really okay to breastfeed and do the prep for the procedure? Was it okay to nurse after having anesthesia? Being a nursing mom added in a lot of extra concerns. This was another reminder of how I always think of my baby before myself now. It's not just about me anymore. I have a tiny human to take care of too! 

The prep wasn't fun and fasting from Saturday night until Monday morning wasn't enjoyable especially while breastfeeding. I definitely have no desire for clear liquids or lemon flavored things for a while! It felt pretty awful at the time but looking back the whole process wasn't as bad as other made it seem to be. I think a big part of that was the drink I was given wasn't bad, and I got to pick most of my fluids. Apparently some taste awful so I lucked out there. The lesson I learned was that I need to worry less and not rely so heavily on other people's experiences. I worried a lot, and it really wasn't as bad as I was expecting besides feeling super hungry.

I was at the hospital for about 2.5 hours. Being there brought back good memories of having Nolan. I had the first appointment in the morning so that I could eat again. The whole anesthesia part is fascinating to me. The last thing I remember was the anesthesiaiologist telling me to have a good nap. Next thing I knew I was awake in a different room, and it was over. I didn't have colon cancer thankfully but I did have a polyp they removed. I have to wait 7 days for the biopsy results. They gave me my discharge papers and some lovely pictures of my colon, and Jeremy drove me home. Nolan behaved well for him. I'm thankful my little family was there with me. Being in a hospital setting is never fun (except when having a baby) but having them there made it a little easier. All in all it wasn't pleasant but I am glad I did it and have the peace of mind things are hopefully okay. Next step is minor surgery to correct the exterior problem and all this will be over. 

My other big take away is to try and be less anxious about things out of my control. It really is silly to worry about something so routine but the fear of the unknown always gets me. Looking back it wasn't as bad as I expected, and I didn't need to feel so grumpy. Today I took a step to keep myself healthy and that's what is important.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Taste of Smryna

On Friday night, we had a low key night at home. We were both tired from being out late on Thursday. On Saturday, we went to Taste of Symrna with some friends. It was free to get in and then you could pay for food samples from different local restaurants. Some things like pizza and taco samples were $1 and other fancier dishes were usually $2-4 per sample. Festivals like this are great with a baby. 
Fred, Jeremy, me, Kara, Brian, and Morgan. It was great to see them!
Nice day for a snow cone!
Just playing with his keys 
Hanging out with Kara!
I always love just spending time with good friends.
We ran into my neighbor who just had a baby a couple weeks ago. Her daughter was a little early and Nolan's big for his age. Quite the size difference! 

Sunday hasn't been fun. Time feels like it's dragging. I've been on a clear liquid diet all day prepping for the colonoscopy tomorrow morning. I've been concerned about my milk supply without having food. I'm hoping my supply will return to normal once I start eating again. So far the worse part has been feeling very hungry and just full of liquid. I'm ready to have this behind me and hoping for good results. 

Friday, September 18, 2015

Weekly updates

Nolan seems to be having a hard time with teething lately. He will still be super sweet and happy at times but other times he is very upset.
He's still not so sure if these teething rings but he does hold them and puts them in his mouth sometimes.
This is the man my gums/teeth hurt face he's been doing a lot lately. Poor guy!
Trying the teether out.
He loves the new Beco Gemini baby carrier that we got. I'm loving it as well. So much more support than the baby bjorn.
He's like a little koala! I love it. I've been trying to get my 10,000 steps a day in again now that the weather is a bit cooler and nicer for walks.
These two are so sweet together. 
We spent Thursday night with Jeremy's family. His sister is in town for a wedding, and we got to meet her new boyfriend. 
Hanging out with Aunt Jessica. 
Interested in Uncle Jonathan's phone .
Lots of meat!
Dinner with my in laws. It was all delicious.
Today we had a quiet day and night at home. 
Nolan's discovered grabbing onto Sydney's fur. She's quickly learning to stay away but I caught this picture of them snuggling together. More soon!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Pediatrician visit

As new parents, it can be hard to know what's wrong when a baby is fussy. We knew Nolan's around the age teething starts but we also looked up ear infections, and he seemed to have symptoms of both. With our last illness (having thrush) I felt like I waited too long to go to the doctor. By that point, it has gotten pretty bad. This time around, we decided to just take him in and make sure everything was okay. Better safe than sorry. Fortunately he didn't have an ear infection, and he is healthy. 

It must just be teething. It's definitely upsetting him. He keeps grabbing his mouth, tugging at his gums with his fingers, and crying more than usual. We have tried letting him suck on a frozen wet wash cloth and these little chill teething rings but so far he isn't so sure about either. Nursing is his favorite thing and super comforting to him. He's even been rejecting the paci sometimes lately.
Although he wasn't sick, I felt like the doctor visit was still a successful trip and worth it. I had a bunch of other questions that I didn't really want to wait another month to have addressed. One of those concerns is the flat spot on his head. It's been hard for me to tell if it's improving since I see him everyday. The doctor reassured me his isn't a severe case but it is still something we will continue to watch. It made me feel better hearing that he didn't seem super concerned. We will take pictures and monitor it. In the mean time, we will continue to try to keep him off the back of his head. Now that he has head control that's much easier. I use the jumper, his carrier, and tummy time as opportunities for him to be off of his back. I do think it's improving from pictures I look at from a couple months ago but we still do have a ways to go. There seems to be talk among moms about babies needing helmets to correct their heads. We are hoping it doesn't come to that but will obviously do what's best for him when the time comes. We will readdress this concern at his 6 month appointment. My mom has reassured me that all her babies also had misshaped heads at first, and we improved so hopefully that will happen for us too.

I also wanted to ask the pediatrician his opinion about nursing while doing the prep for the colonoscopy as well as after the anesthesia. Everyone has told me it's fine during the prep but I was getting mixed opinions about the anesthesia and pumping and dumping. I was glad to hear from Nolan's doctor that he had no problem with me nursing after the procedure. That made me feel a little better about managing things. It's only a few days away but I'm ready to have it over with.

I also brought up our concerns with the amount he is still spitting up. He explained again that his growth is great and that he didn't feel he needs any sort of treatment. I honestly didn't want to give him anything for it either. It's just more of a mess and a pain than anything. I feel like we are used to it but I more so feel little bad when he spits up on other people. He's a baby though and that should be expected. We try and be prepared with burp clothes always on hand but somehow it still ends up on his clothes, our clothes, the floor, the sheets, his activity mat, his car seat, etc.  He continues to be our happy spitter. 

As far as other updates, breastfeeding has been going better. I'm hoping my body is starting to understand how much to make. I still make a lot and get engorged overnight as well as some sore spots but it's not quite as bad as it used to be. He's typically nursing 5 times a day. 4 times during the day, and I still do one overnight feeding. His longest stretch is usually 8 hours which I think is pretty good. He nurses every 3-4 hours during the day. It depends when he wakes up when he has his first feeding but it's usually around 8:30am, 1pm, 4pm, and then at bedtime around 8pm. Every night is still a little different though. Teething and dirty diapers I think are usually what causes him to wake up more so than hunger but it can be hard to tell sometimes.

The doctor was happy with his growth and said it has remained on a consistent curve. He's still 90th percentile for weight and 75th percentile for height. I often get the comments about how chubby his is but I remind myself he's happy and growing. They all grow differently and you really can't compare a baby's size or sleeping and eating.

His updated stats as he approaches 5 months are 19 pounds 5 ounces and 26 inches long.

He did great during his weight check and posed so nicely for this picture. 

He got his temperature checked as well.
He's been hovering around the high 99 to low 100 range recently but they said that was fine. Fevers are more in the 100.3 plus range. 

He screamed during the ear check and the rest of the time the doctor and I were talking. I learned that it isn't necessary to clean babies ears with a q tip and to just leave them alone. I'm learning new things everyday during this parenting adventure.
We went on a walk and had a play date with my friend Hillary and her baby Eva. She is 9 months old, and it is fun to see all the things she can do that Nolan will be doing soon such as crawling and sitting up. I loved how sweetly he watched her as if he was trying to learn from her. Tonight we are heading to mother in laws. Jeremy's sister is in town. I'm sure she won't believe the difference since she met him in April. 

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Ear infection or teething?

The past couple days my sweet boy hasn't quite been himself. He still has happy times but in general he's been much fussier than usual and not sleeping as a well. He's also had a low fever a few times which got me thinking, is this just teething or could it be something else like an ear infection? 

I'm finding that it can be very tricky to figured out what the cause of fussiness is. He's drooling a lot and putting his hands and toys in his mouth which made me think it was just teething. However, he has pulled on his ears so it gets confusing. Yesterday he barely napped which is unlike him. He is usually a great napper. By the evening, he was overly tired, screaming, and didn't want us to put him down. I wish I had called the doctor but by that point it was after 5pm. 

I plan to call in the morning and see if they want me to bring him in to take a quick peek at his ears. Part of me just wants to go and make sure it isn't. From our experience with thrush, I felt like I waited too long to go to the doctor, and this time around I want to go sooner before things potentially get worse. Could it just be teething, definitely. Could it be something else, I think so too. His spitting up has also been pretty bad lately but that's a whole different story. Here's to hoping he wakes up in the morning feeling happier again. It's definitely sad to see your baby cry and not know what's going on.
So many rolls! I do think he's starting to stretch out a bit though! Here he is staring at his keys which are one of his favorite toys right now. 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Weekend updates

We had a great weekend. Just the right mixture of fun, productivity, and relaxation. I love those kind of weekends where you have some plans but still feel refreshed and ready for the week.

On Thursday, I had a girls night with two of my neighbors. I made pumpkin bars as a snack! I was super happy with how they turned out. Usually I'm disappointed in my baking skills but this recipe was great! It came from a website called Sugar Apron. It was nice having sometime with just the girls. A lot of the time we do play dates with the little ones and it's hard to talk. All the little ones were asleep and we just talked and laughed from 8-11pm!
Here's a picture of those pumpkin bars. This picture is from Sugar Apron's website. 
As a stay at home Mom, it's been a goal of mine to cook and bake more. I was glad I did and that all the work and clean up at least turned out well. It's always disappointing trying a new recipe that doesn't turn out well. Anyway, I highly recommend these! Perfect fall dessert! 

On Friday I met two of my old coworkers for happy hour. It is always great to see them and catch up. Teaching sounds as busy as ever, and it makes me even more thankful that I'm staying home. The thought of doing everything they are doing at work plus being a Mom sounds stressful. I give all those teaching Moms with babies and kids a lot of credit!

Friday night Jeremy's Mom, Terry, and his brother and Riley came over. We grilled steaks and just caught up. It was nice to see everyone.
Nolan with his Uncle Jonathan 
Can't wait for these two to get married next April!
Nolan was a bit grumpy so I ended  up getting him to bed before I got to eat dinner. I love those button down shirts we got as a gift from one of my brother's friends at his wedding. They are 6-12 month from Janie and Jack! I love how he looks like a little boy and mini Jeremy!
Headed off to get his PJs on. Lately everything is going in his mouth and he's drooling much more. I'm thinking the teething might be starting soon!
Ready for bed! 

On Saturday, we spent the day watching football and tennis with a friend at our place. 
Nolan's clearly a tennis fan already! Jeremy and I were both craving burgers so we went to Grub. Dinner date plus Nolan! He slept the whole time while we enjoyed our meal. Not the healthiest but delicious. Grub also has great milkshakes and fun mixed drinks. All of these are nice for a treat!
On Sunday, one of Jeremy's friends and his wife came over.
It's always funny to see Nolan being the bigger baby! His face here makes me laugh. Alex is 2 months old and Nolan is approaching 5 months next week!
Fall weather made an appearance this weekend too. The nights and mornings were much cooler. I love babies in footie pajamas but I will miss summer baby clothes. I recently bought Nolan a bunch of winter stuff during Carter's Labor Day sale. 
I think he should be set for a little while while with long sleeves and pants. I bought a mix of 9 and 12 month. 9 month fits well now but later in the winter I'm sure we will transition to 12 months. I like to buy from Carter's during their sales (all those clothes pictured only cost $50 and I got free shipping) and then I leave the tags on and keep the receipts. They have a great return/exchange policy which makes it easy to get a different size. Well Nolan's up from his nap. More soon! Hope everyone has a great week!

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